Recruiting Diary 2012: Ashton Shumpert, Aug. 31: New offers in for 4-star Shumpert

Ashton Shumpert sat in the coaches office at the Itawamba field house Thursday afternoon with a handful of Wheat Thins in his right hand and two more offers in his left.

Shumpert has yet to play a game this season but the 4-star recruit’s offer sheet continues to climb.

Purdue and Alcorn State joined a list this week that now stands at 10.

Ole Miss has made contact this week and Shumpert said he may attend the Jackson St.-Mississippi State season opener Saturday.

Shumpert now lists Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Oklahoma State, Vanderbilt, Georgia, Southern Miss and Alabama and Memphis as his suitors.

“Everybody’s about to start. I’ll take a visit to some of the games.,” Shumpert said.

He wants to visit, but he wants to play as well. A lingering illness has kept him out of the first three weeks of his senior season.

He had two television plans Thursday, watching the Crosstown Classic between Lafayette and Oxford on Fox Sports South and seeing how one of the teams offering him does in the year’s Southeastern Conference opener.

Vanderbilt lost but didn’t disappoint, giving No. 9 South Carolina a run in a 17-13 loss.

Shumpert didn’t venture to pick a winner in the Crosstown Classic but did say he heard Oxford was better than some thought – Oxford won 19-0 to end Lafayette’s 34-game win streak.

Itawamba is 2-0 going into Friday’s game against Nettleton.


7 to See: Houston DE Chris Jones

I’ll be in Okolona tonight to see the Chieftains take on Houston and defensive end Chris Jones. Jones was one of our 7 To See in the 2012 Daily Journal Football Journal. Here’s the story that ran in the section.

Chris Jones was a basketball player switching schools. Two years removed from a promising prep career on the court at Nettleton, Jones has evolved into a monster defensive end at Houston.

The 6-foot-7, 270-pound senior will be switching schools against next season, too.

Until an impressive 40-time at a June camp at Mississippi State, he flew under the radar.

“I was swapping coaches, moving to different schools,” Jones said of his low-lying status. “At the camp, I just played my hardest and did everything to the fullest.”

MSU took him right off the radar at the June 11 camp after he ran a 4.7, 40-yard dash that caught a lot of attention before he committed to Dan Mullen.

Jones said he lost 20 pounds after the transfer. He played in only six games as he worked to establish residency but led the Class 4A Toppers in tackles per game with 9.4 and had five sacks.

Jones and the senior group have set a goal and it’s a big one. Houston has never won a playoff game and they want to change that. The Toppers went to the postseason last year for the sixth time.

“We’re going to see what we can do to change that,” first-year Houston coach William Cook said. “That’s the seniors’ goal, to win a playoff game and host a playoff game.”

Giving up his last season of high school basketball isn’t in his plans. He’s not even sold on giving it up in the Southeastern Conference.

He played in the Mississippi Association of Coaches All-Star basketball games in July. Last season, he averaged 17 points and 10 rebounds per game.

“I’m going to try out basketball there but if it doesn’t work, I’m just going to leave it there,” Jones said. “Basketball was my first love but I seem to be better in football.”

Poss off to hot start for Amory Panthers

The A-Game is tonight in Aberdeen. Appreciate Amory QB Jon David Poss for the conversation this week. He and the Panthers are off to a hot start and trying to win back the A-Trophy for the first time in four years.

AMORY – John, Jon, David, Davis. As long as Amory is winning, sophomore quarterback Jon David Poss won’t care what you call him or how you spell it.

It has been spelled a multitude of ways on Twitter. 

Poss is two games into his new job and onlookers will undoubtedly compare him to record-setting Forest Williams. 

“Watching how he handled everything helped me out,” Poss said, “watching how he handled success and adversity too.” 

Williams led a high-powered offense that carried the Panthers to the Class 4A North finals last season. He threw for 5,100 yards, fourth in the nation, and 55 touchdowns, breaking his own single-game passing record.

Poss has led Amory to a 2-0 start and has thrown for 606 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions. His quarterback rating sits at 151.0 as his biggest challenge awaits.

Read the rest of the story.

Oxford ends Lafayette’s 34-game streak

OXFORD – Oxford lived on Lafayette’s side of the field Thursday night and in front of a television audience took back the Crosstown Classic trophy with a 19-0 win at Bobby Holcomb Field.

In an off-and-on again rain, it was the first Oxford win against the rival Commodores (2-1) since 2005 and on a larger scale ended Lafayette’s 34-game winning streak, the longest in Mississippi.

Oxford’s defense held Lafayette and running tandem Brandon Mack and D.K. Buford to 23 total yards in the first half and stopped the only drive that looked to be giving the Dores any momentum in the second. 

“Awesome, just awesome,” Oxford coach Johnny said of his defense. “The offense played well. We didn’t put them away like we needed to. But I’m going to tell you, special teams was pretty special.”

Trailing 13-0 and driving, Lafayette quarterback Mack was picked by Oxford’s Leanthony Rogers at the 10 yard line. 

Lafayette’s next drive ended in an interception that Mark Pegues took 36 yards to the end zone with less than a minute to play.

“They did a great job defensively, the best defense we’ve seen this year no doubt,” Lafayette coach Eric Robertson said. “We just never could get anything going.”

High School Football Schedule for Friday, Aug. 31

Alcorn Central (1-1) at Walnut (0-2)
Amory (2-0) at Aberdeen (1-1)
Belmont (1-0) at Tishomingo Co. (1-1)
Benton County (0-1) at Falkner (2-0)
Bruce (2-0) at Coffeeville (0-2)
Marvell Aca. (2-0) at Calhoun Aca. (2-0)
Corinth (1-0) at Booneville (2-0)
E. Oktibbeha (1-1) at N. Pontotoc (1-1)
East Union (1-0) at Biggersville (0-1)
Hatley (0-2) at Mooreville (0-2)
Holly Springs (1-1) at W. Tallahatchie (1-1)
Houston (2-0) at Okolona (1-1)
H.W. Byers (0-2) at Smithville (2-0)
Immanuel (0-2) at Marshall Aca. (2-0)
Indianola Aca. (1-1) at Oak Hill (2-0)
Kossuth (0-2) at Hamilton (1-1)
Nettleton (0-2) at Itawamba AHS (2-0)
New Albany (1-1) at Pontotoc (1-1)
New Site (0-1) at Mantachie (0-2)
Ripley (1-1) at South Pontotoc (1-1)
Starkville (0-2) at Tupelo (1-1)
Starkville Aca. (1-1) at Mag. Heights (1-1)
Water Valley (2-0) at Calhoun City (1-1)
Weir (1-1) at East Webster (2-0)
West Point (0-1) at Columbus (1-0)
West Lowndes (1-1) at Shannon (0-2)

Scores from Aug. 28

Tupelo 7, Grenada 0
Jumpertown 11, New Site 6
Corinth 17, Walnut 1
Myrtle 10, Wheeler 3
Booneville 11, Belmont 6
Smithville 10, Tremont 0
Smithville 8, Columbus 6
West Union 11, Pine Grove 7
Falkner 4, Blue Mountain 3
Mooreville 10, New Hope 9
South Pontotoc 3, East Union 1

Pontotoc 3, Amory 0